Admission Requirements

On the basis of guidelines issued by The Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, admission to Emmanuel Christian Seminary is granted on the basis of the following criteria:

Masters programs

  1. A baccalaureate degree from an institution of higher learning accredited by a US agency recognized by the Council of Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) or the demonstrated educational equivalent of a North American baccalaureate degree
  2. Evidence of academic, personal, and spiritual preparation that demonstrate potential for making a contribution to church and society
  3. Evidence of capability for continued graduate-level studies, having developed to a satisfactory degree the ability to think independently, to communicate effectively, and to research adequately, as indicated in writing up a critical incident from ministry experience.
  4. A broad undergraduate education with a strong general education core is desirable

Doctoral Program

  1. An earned Master of Divinity or its equivalent from an institution accredited by the Association of Theological Schools††.
  2. Three years of ministerial experience.
  3. Evidence of academic, personal, and spiritual preparation that demonstrate potential for making a contribution to church and society.
  4. Evidence of capability of graduate-level studies, having developed to a satisfactory degree the ability to think independently, to communicate effectively, and to research adequately.
  5. A broad undergraduate education with a strong general education core is desirable.

Emmanuel Christian Seminary welcomes qualified students regardless of age, race, sex, disability, color, or national or ethnic origin. Admission is open to qualified students from any church body or theological tradition.

Provisional Status

Provisional Status:

The Admissions Committee will determine any deficiencies and will specify how they are to be made up. Students with such deficiencies may be admitted provisionally, but restricted as to the number of Emmanuel courses they may take until the requirements are met. No student can apply for degree candidacy while on provisional admittance status. 

† Exceptional Circumstances

†Under exceptional circumstances, a student without a baccalaureate degree may be admitted to the Master of Divinity, Master of Arts in Religion, or Master of Arts in Christian Ministries program on a probationary status. The rare exception to this policy will be based upon the normal considerations for admission, plus age, years of experience, and history of excellence in ministry. The Academic Dean, with the assistance of the Admissions Committee, will review any exceptions. History of excellence in ministry is assessed on the basis of a letter of recommendation from an official representative of the applicant’s church, references from 3 additional persons (5 total references) acquainted with the applicant’s ministry, and an essay on the applicant’s goals for graduate studies written by the applicant and demonstrating a sound rationale for the exception. The letter of recommendation, references, and essay must be submitted to the Dean’s office along with the application to the program. Once a provisionally-accepted student has successfully completed 18 credit hours in the appropriate program with a 3.0 or better, the probationary status will be removed.

†† MDiv Equivalency

††MDiv equivalency will be determined in reference to Emmanuel’s MDiv program guidelines. Exceptions will be made on a case-by-case basis by the Doctor of Ministry Admissions Committee.

International Students

Admission into the MACM and DMin programs currently is unavailable to F-1 students. Canadian citizens may petition for an exception.

See additional information below »


Steps to Apply

  1. APPLICATION: Complete and submit your official application, including the essay (or critical incident statement for DMin), and personal conduct statement. Apply Online Now »
  2. APP FEE: Submit a non-refundable application fee of $30. Pay Online at the end of the online application.
  3. TRANSCRIPT: Arrange to have an official transcript sent from each graduate and/or undergraduate institution you have attended by one of the following methods:
    Mail to: Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan
                     Office of Admissions
                     P.O. Box 550, Milligan, TN 37682
    Electronic transcript emailed:
  4. TWO REFERENCES: Request a reference from two different people, preferably a former college professor, current minister, employer or supervisor. You will request references from within the online application.
  5. INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS: Click here for additional requirements »

An application should be received no later than 30 days before the beginning of the semester for which the applicant wishes to enroll.

For further information or to schedule a campus visit, please contact the Office of Admissions, by mail: PO Box 550, Milligan, TN 37682; phone: 423.461.1535 or 800.933.3771; or email: Administrative offices are open Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm (EST).



Emmanuel Christian Seminary is dedicated to seeing our students receive a top quality, graduate level ministerial education. Our tuition is one of the lowest in the nation among seminaries and we strive to award our students top scholarships. In addition, when you factor in the cost of living for our area, Emmanuel is a great value!
Tuition $485/credit hour

Technology Fee (MACM, MDiv, MAR, DMin, Cert. in CMin): 6+ credit hours
Technology Fee (MACM, MDiv, MAR, DMin, Cert. in CMin): 1-5 credit hours
Graduate Student Activity Fee (MDiv, MAR): 6+ credit hours
Graduate Student Activity Fee (MDiv, MAR): 1-5 credit hours
Lifetime Academic Records Fee
Course Audit Fee


$75 (one time)
$100/credit hour


We are committed to making your graduate degree affordable and will work with you individually to explore all of the options available to finance your education. One of our goals is to keep your student loan debt at a minimum. For this reason, we offer many institutional scholarships to help offset the cost of tuition. Most students at Emmanuel are eligible for some level of a scholarship. To learn more about available scholarships, email or call the Admissions Office at 800.933.3771.



To help offset the cost of tuition, you have the option of applying for a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. The interest rate of the Unsubsidized Loan is 5.31% and accrues while you are in school. These loans require Entrance Loan Counseling and a Master Promissory Note (MPN) for all first time borrowers and Exit Loan Counseling for all borrowers who are graduating, not returning to Emmanuel, or have dropped below at least a half-time enrollment status.To apply for a student loan, you are required to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Please use the Milligan College school code, 003511. Read more important information about the FAFSA here »

Your loan funds will be received by the school via electronic funds transfer (EFT). Stafford loans are disbursed in two equal disbursements for the MDiv and MAR and four disbursements for the MACM, for the academic year. You will receive a Financial Aid Offer before the beginning of the academic year which will indicate the amount of institutional funds and unsubsidized loan funds for which you qualify; however, you can reduce or reject the student loan by indicating such when the Offer is returned.

For questions and more information about federal loans, contact your Student Financial Services Counselor.

Payment Options

Emmanuel also offers a payment plan which will allow you to make payments for the remaining balance of your tuition during the semester while ensuring that the balance is paid before the next semester begins.


With this plan, all outstanding charges for the semester are paid on or before the first day of class. Payments may be made via cash, check, Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover. For your convenience, you may pay online through Self Service, where you can view your account, print and view statements, make a payment online, and view a history of all payments on your account. By using your MC Self Service ID and password, you will have access to your online statement and current activity on your account. Payments and charges will be reflected immediately and you will have 24/7 access to your most recent bill.



Milligan offers an interest free payment plan that allows you to spread your tuition costs over nine or ten months if you cannot afford to pay tuition in a lump sum or to finance the difference between costs and financial aid. This plan can be used in conjunction with a Federal PLUS Loan and/or Alternative Loan to assist students and families in managing their educational debt. The payment plan enrollment fee for students enrolled in fall/ spring semesters is $75 for the academic year, $40 for spring semester only. You must enroll by the first day of classes. Click here for instructions on setting up the payment plan »


International Students


**Admission into the MACM and DMin programs currently is unavailable to F-1 students. Canadian citizens may petition for an exception.**

In addition to the application process outlined above, International students also must: 

        1. Present a satisfactory score on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS), except in special cases when the applicant is from a country in which English is the common language.
          • Normally, the TOEFL score must be at least 79 (previously 550 on the paper-based examination or 213 on the computer-based examination) on the internet-based examination. The IELTS score must be at least 6.5.
          • Please have your TOEFL or IELTS score sent directly from the Educational Testing Service to Emmanuel’s Admissions Office.
          • Students who do not have access to the online version of the test should contact the Dean’s Office at Emmanuel for further instructions.
        2. Email a copy of your current passport to
        3. Complete and submit the International Student Affidavit of Support, Student Certification, and Sponsor Support Verification. Click here for forms »
        4. If you are admitted, you must complete the immigration procedures outlined in the section below.


BEFORE form I-20 can be issued, students must be admitted and complete the appropriate immigration documentation listed on the site linked below.



Several years ago, the International Student Scholarship was established in an effort to help students with some of the financial burdens of coming to study with us. In recent years, students studying at Emmanuel have come from Brazil, Chile, China, Haiti, India, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, and Zimbabwe. Inquire with the Emmanuel Admissions Office about scholarship availability.

Veteran Benefits

Milligan University is a veteran-friendly institution. The university allows for military transfer credit, flexibility on registration and withdrawals due to deployments, and payment deferments while awaiting properly applied-for educational benefits. Milligan also waives application fees for veterans and provides individual counseling during the application and admission process. Give us a call at 800.262.8337, and we’ll walk you through the admissions process.

Milligan is among the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools which are doing the most to embrace America’s veterans as students, according to G.I. Jobs magazine.

The Registrar’s Office at Milligan University is pleased to help students who have served in the United States Armed Forces and now desire to attend college using their Montgomery GI Bill® or VA Vocational Rehabilitation educational benefits. We look forward to assisting you to reach your education goals as well as those of dependents and or spouses of deceased soldiers through Dependents Educational Assistance.

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).